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Here is an example of a project I created from scratch and developed to pitch in half a quarter. I managed a team of creatives, including writers and interactive designers, and we produced a presentation for a prospective client. All artwork in this portfolio is mine or stock imagery.


The Visual Development for the Summerset project began with a prompt in a Collaborative Learning Class at the SCAD. Eventually, Summerset's tagline evolved into:


"In order to escape their dark and frozen planet of Winterburn, contenders must fight in a brutal annual race to win citizenship to the luxury solar city gliding across the sky: Summerset."


SUMMERSET - Visual Development

Initial concept doodles.


Beat boards to pitch initial concept for feedback.

     While the overall story was serious, the premise and occasionally tone would be irreverent. Early on, I decided the aesthetic would best serve the story with heavy shadows from harsh lighting and unconventionally bright color palettes. There would be an emphasis on character silhouettes and artificial lighting, which eventually gives way to sunlight.  

These decisions were supported by the class and clients, so I continued down this path.


The Landscape of Winterburn.

Since most racing stories take place in desert plains, I wanted the settings for the Summerset story to be in a dark world

of frigid tundras and ice mountains.


The flying city of Summerset would be the major source of light -- it's a moving sun.


The closer the characters got to their end goal, the brighter their world became, which would be an interesting visual narrative as well.

Summerset is Close - Color Keys.
Summerset is Close - Color Keys 2.
Summerset is Close - Color Keys 3.
Summerset is Close - Beatboard,
Summer City - Dawn.
Summerset is Close - Color Keys 4.
Summerset is Close - Color Keys 5.
Summerset is Close - Beat Board.
Summerset is Close - Beat Board.

Every Winterburn city would have a giant control spire, as seen above. A city with an influential spire could be the next race's host city, or the "Summer City."

The spires are plated with hundreds of monitors to broadcast the race to the citizens.

Who is Racing?

The world / environment would enable the art direction to go wild with luminescent  winter vehicles and fashion. 


Originally, character designs of racers would vary within 3 distinct groups of body types, based on technology and isolated evolution unique to each group. Feedback from class interest narrowed it down to 2.


They remained humanoid for easy audience appeal. Having them in glowing  winter gear also immediately calls upon the basic human need for light and warmth, making them more relatable.

Character Sketch.
Character Sketch.
Character Sketch.
Poor Racer.
Cyber Twins.
Poor Racer Starting Vehicle.
Gun Racer
Twin Starting Vehicle.
Gun Racer Vehicle.
Poor Racer Second Vehicle.
Extra Vehicle.

Their vehicles mix the style of sports cars and bikes with the practicality of snow mobiles and winter treads, creating a sort of silly but recognizable sense of reckless driving in dangerous conditions.


All the vehicles have solar panels, for when the racers near the final stretch of the race. Vehicles may glow in dark by themselves, or they might be lit by flourescent paint. Whether it's intentional, or the result of competitive graffiti... that's a side story.

Thank you for viewing the Visual Development process of Summerset!

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